12 Smart travel tips for planning your vacation
Search and search all over again
Don’t rush! Search for deals early on, go to travel fairs, compare prices online and do not postpone to last-minute booking! Even if it seems thrilling to find accommodation while heading for your destination, the chances of finding cheap accommodation rates are becoming very slim. Whether we are talking about accommodation or flight tickets, reserve about 50 days before for lower rates.
Check your passport
Check the expiry date of your passport and make sure it is valid for at least 6 months after entering a foreign country. There are some countries that will not let you get in / out if your passport is not valid for at least 6 months. Inform yourself about the visa for the country you are traveling in, but also about the country / countries where you have stops in! If you travel with your children, check what kind of papers you need for them. Make copies of your passport, even if you are in a rush. Put one set of copies in the travel bag that you are taking with you on the plane. If you are traveling with someone else, exchange copies of each others info as well.
Check for Visa
Check if you need a visa for the country you are traveling in, or in the countries where you will have stops. Check if you can get the visa online or on arrival. If the process of getting a visa online is to painful, then just get it on arrival. If you get it online, make sure you will have copies of it.
Travel tickets, hotel reservations
Travel smart and print everything.. just in case. I know most of them can be used from your phone, but a lot of things can go wrong so its more safer to have them on a piece of paper too. You can put everything you need on your phone: reservation confirmations, photos (pdf) for personal documents, tourist information, maps, addresses, etc. Attention, not all places have access to the internet, so you must have access to them offline too.
Make your travel insurance!
“There’s no way it can happen to me …” Yes, anything can happen and you will certainly have to take out a wagon if you do not have a travel insurance and you need medical services. Medical travel insurance is not that costly and it can help you a lot!
Check your credit/debit cards
Did you know that some banks set a monthly / daily cash withdrawal on the card? Ask the bank or check for yourself if it has this type of restriction. We always use Revolut debit card in our trips since it has it's own advantages over other cards. And it’s a good idea to also have some cash on you, do not just rely on the card.
Keep track of airport baggage restrictions
If you have doubts, measure and weigh your luggage before you reach the airport and make sure they fit within limits, otherwise you may be unpleasant surpised that you need to pay extra charges at the airport or, worse!
Split your cash
Don’t put all your money in the same place! Ideally is not to go through such experiences, but if you will lose your purse or wallet, you will still have some money.
Memory and charger
Don’t leave in vacation without enough memory in your phone / camera for pictures and videos. It is good to have a backup memory card. Be sure to check if your charger can be used in the country you will visit. Countries have different socket types and voltage, and you may need an adapter if you want to be able to charge anything.
Plan your outfits in mind
If you have a pretty good idea in your mind about what clothes you’ll wear every day, you’ll spare your lost time on vacation and you will spare a lot of time when it will be time to make your luggage.
Search for information about public transport
Before you leave in vacation, inform yourself about the public transport in the country that you visit: where do you get tickets, how much do they cost, what kind of ticket (for all lines, for a day, for 30 minutes, etc.) , tram, bus, etc. Check public transit maps in advance and plan your itinerary for when you are there. A bit of research online will also allow you to make a budget to see how much money will you need for your trip.
Internet / Sim cards
As we live in the age of technology, it would be sad not to take advantage of everything it offers. Maps, attractions, restaurants, everything is available once you are connected. How can you have internet at the best price ?
In most of the cities you can find a lot of places with free wifi, but there are cases where this option is not available. So what options do you have depending of your traveling style ?
- For traveling to a single country, then probably getting a local sim card with voice / data is the cheapest way.
- For traveling within multiple countries, it would be better to get multi-countries prepaid sim cards. They can either be bought from some airports or they can be sent directly at your home. We recommend the Aerobile or Surfroam pre-paid sim cards, since are the only ones we used.